The Amazing Race: Looking Ahead To Season 7

OK, maybe I’m jumping the gun here as season 6 has just finished. But for those looking ahead, here are the teams for Season 7:

Looks to me like a much better mix than season 6. Very little in the way of actors and models. Plus the first ever mother and son team. Yes, Rob and Amber are in it, but I like them OK. The POW we saw in the preview is Ron from the Dating team of Ron and Kelly. I’m not too sure how I’ll take to him. Motivational Speakers set my teeth on edge.

I wouldn’t get overly worried about Ron being grating because he’s a motivational speaker. He does that as a job because of his experiences in the military, not because he set out to do that as his vocation.

His full name is Ron Young, Jr. More here.

Google will turn up all sorts of articles on him. Here is an example from the POW portion of things.

Granted, reality TV can bring out the assiest side of people. But, living here in Atlanta, when he came home he was all over the TV and radio. And, in every instance, he came across as a good, normal guy. Pretty much the kind you would like to hang out with as a friend. So, I hope he carries that vibe into the race and gives us more couples like Chip/Kim or Kris/Jon and less Adam/Rebeccas.

Based solely on pictures:

Megan and Heidi- Look! It’s the Hilton Sisters!
Meredith and Gretchen- Old people can’t race. You seen them drive?
Susan and Patrick- I don’t like the dynamic.

Brian and Greg- They look confident
Rob and Amber- Rob is a solid competitor and doesn’t get too flustered. Amber will follow wherever he goes without question.
Uchenna and Joyce- The only married team. He looks like a HOSS!
Ron and Kelly- He was a pilot in the military. Navigation should be a skill of his.

Lynn and Alex- C’mon. You know it, too!
Debbie and Bianca- I’ll bet we all love them before they exit.
Ryan and Chuck- Buddies are always memorable…unless they are Jews from New York…
Ray and Deana- I predict a cross between */Victimia and Adam and Rebecca.

Thank you for that link Mullinator. I just watched most of Ron’s video on the Premier Speaker’s site (it glitched up on me near the end). I feel much better about him already.

Mother and son team is a good idea. And I liked the preview with the spitting lamas. I kinda didn’t like already knowing that the first clue was Lima, Peru, but then I’m weird like that. Umm… I was happy for Freddy and Kendra, but a little disappointed for Kris and John. That lock challenge was really cool, though. I really hope they get rid of the “no money” rule next season. I would rather it be a time penalty or extra roadblock or something. Did anyone else think Phil was looking mighty fine in the previews? :smiley:

Just for kicks my comments on the preview videos, brought to you by Ambien™. Somehow I still don’t know what that is, but man do I want some.

Rob and Ambuh (engaged) - Just when we thought they were gone forever. Blah blah blah we rely on each other, work well together, complement each other, etc. They spoke for four minutes and said nothing. Initial like factor: don’t love, don’t hate.

Brian and Greg (brothers) - A recruiter approached them at a Dave Matthews concert and convinced them to apply. I didn’t know it happened like that. They’re competitive and athletic and won’t get under each other’s skins. We’ll see. :wink: Initial like factor: kinda like 'em.

Ray and Deana (dating on and off) - They fight over directions in the car. My pick for the shriekingest team this season. They studied the show in-depth and feel that they’re ready. Best comment was Ray’s - he mentioned his strengths, then mentioned that Deana’s strength was deferring to his strengths. :smiley: Initial like factor: no.

Debbie and Bianca (lifelong friends) - Not sure why exactly, but they annoy. Maybe it’s the matching shirts. They mention their 20 years of friendship and that they know each other well enough to make an effective team. That and their “people person skills.” Initial like factor: instant dislike.

Gretchen and Meredith (grandparents) - In their late sixties, looking for an adventure. Big fans of the show. Initial like factor: Like 'em, though they’re doomed of course.

Heidi and Megan (best friends) - Wow do they look alike. :eek: Almost a little scary. Like “Night of the Blondes” or something. They think they’ll keep the fighting to a minimum. Not going on the show just to win - they want to enjoy it. If they live up to that they could be a fun team to watch. Initial like factor: so far so good.

Lynn and Alex (boyfriends) - A couple and best friends. Both of them remind me a little of John Michael Higgins’ character in Best in Show, especially since they mentioned their dog in the video. Alex says he’s judgemental 'cause he’s a gay guy. Not sure what that means. They also mention that they know how to look good on camera. Sounds like Lynn considers “roughing it” staying at a 3.5 star hotel. Not seeing them going far. Mentioned the other teams as the hillbillies, the republicans, the old people, and the others. If these guys do manage to stick around for a while they could be a good source of some quality snark on the others. Initial like factor: I like 'em (though not in a homosexual way that’s for sure… oh wait wrong show sorry).

Ron and Kelly (dating) - She gets exhausted during two hour flights. Uh oh. He hates airports and getting on planes. Uh oh again. Strengths? They’re competitive, love to win, hate to lose, etc. She’s a pageant competition girl. He’s military and starts barking orders when he gets stressed. I sense an early meltdown, but they could go pretty far. Initial like factor: lukewarm.

Ryan and Chuck (buds) - Well, now I know who the hillbillies are. Seem like OK folks, but they’ve never been outside the US. The interview was hilarious though. Ryan went on and on for a few minutes about something, then someone off camera asked Chuck if he had anything to add to what his friend had said. He goes, “I concur.” They mentioned that they have to make sure they eat, and that they’re concerned about getting in a footrace with some skinny folk. Initial like factor: no idea.

Susan and Patrick (mother and son) - They have nicknames for everyone, which is always good. The gay guys are Prancer and Dancer (Patrick is gay too for the record), the blond girls are the Hilton Sisters, the grandparents are Mom and Pops. Hee. Calls someone else the Heavy Metal Guys. They hate Rob and Amber too and predict an early departure for them. Initial like factor: Intrigue. I have a good feeling about them.

Uchenna and Joyce (married) - Met as extras on a movie set. Wasn’t love at first site, but have been together for 14 years (married for six). Food and sleep deprivation may cause conflicts. Uh oh. Both mention that they wear the pants in the family. Uh oh again. :smiley: Feel confident in their chances after physically sizing up the competition. They don’t really say anything interesting. Initial like factor: meh. No strong feelings one way or the other.

CBS is apparently contractually obligated to have at least one former beauty queen cast in every season of TAR. :roll eyes:

I will continue to hope against hope that Rob & Amber are lost to this world in a terrible fiery plane crash that sends them directly into the depths of hell, where they belong. Although if this actually happened, I would have heard about it by now, and y’all would have heard about dancing naked on the tables in every bar that would let me in. (And I thought I had issues with Colin & Christie …)

Otherwise, I am looking forward to the next season. Based on nothing in particular, really, I have a lot of pre-love for Brian & Greg (I think it might be Brian’s hair in the picture), Lynn & Alex (good on them if they can get married in Amsterdam, although I question the wisdom of coming out to the folks on national television), and Susan & Patrick (because I have always secretly wished one of my parents would go on TAR with me).

Serious question - What is so attractive about this show?

I have watched the last two seasons quite faithfully, but I have a strong “this show sucks” feeling in my gut, even as I watch it.

Using last nights episode as an example, these are the things that stand out:

We don’t know anything about these people. Freddy and Kendra are models, and that’s about all I know of them. There is no interaction between teams, only within teams, so we never get to know the individuals. Unlike Survivor, where every word and action can come back to bite you in the ass, it doesn’t matter what you do in TAR.

There is no point in winning a leg, just don’t finish last (sometimes). Other than winning a trip (from!), there is no bonus for winning. In fact, it is probably a negative. You get to leave in the middle of the night, only to spend the next six hours sleeping on the ground in front of a locked gate somewhere while your competitors are in a nice hotel bed a few blocks away.

The non-elimination leg penalty. Pointless. The money penalty was completely useless. Watching teams beg for money from wealthy tourists who want to get on TV is boring and pointless.

This isn’t a race, it is a series of races. Bunching brings everyone together on every leg, so the fact that you kicked everyone’s butt yesterday means nothing today. May as well just have everyone start at the same time instead of trying to inject fake drama at the start of every show. It is bogus, and we all know it.

Luck plays way too big a part in winning. The key factors in last nights show were picking a bad taxi driver and getting a bad draw on the key/lock challenge. And how exciting was it to watch the teams paint a car???

The one quality of the show, the scenery, is even weak. It is like a package tour on crank. “Look, the Terra Cotta Warriors (only one of the wonders of the world), now where’s that stupid box-o-clues?” The contestants go racing through these wonderful places at breakneck speed, getting nothing out of the experience. They complete a task and their one contact with the native people is to grab an envelope out of their hands and start littering (they always throw the tear strip on the ground, did you notice?). And the end is stupid as well, with the racers being greeted by a comically, stereotypically dressed native, who they rapidly dismiss and turn their attention to Phil, who gives them a look of fake concern and then tells them the news that they (and we) already know.

After two seasons of faithful watching, I have come to the conclusion that this show sucks.

Roommates! Identical roommates!

They’re rommates, but Megan is a stay-at-home mom? How’s that work? Does Heidi rent a room from Megan and her partner? Or are they lesbian lovers? Or is this a Kate and Allie kind of deal?

Debbie from the Debbie & Bianca team looks like she could be the Lost Judd.

As one of the most rabid fans of this show, I feel pretty well-equipped to handle this. We’ll go point by point.

I’ll probably hit most of these points in specific answers below, but I would say: The set up of show minimizes alliances, scapegoating, etc. A most welcome change from shows set up to imitate Survivor. The scenery is great. The production is awesome. Whether it’s a cut from Bolo scratching his head to a monkey doing the same or a cameraman panning to a clue box as a team is passing it complaining about not finding a clue box, you get the idea that the people that put this out want to have as much fun as possible. And, you get the feeling that they won’t hesitate to mock irritating contestants which is great for those of us tired of idiotic antics.

Well, you are a bit right there. The last 2 have been the worst 2. If you can, buy the season 1 DVD when available. That’s the show at it’s best. Still a bad AR is better than most other reality TV.

We know enough about them, but the main point of the show is the race itself. It’s how the people deal with stress, time, and challenges. Not how they scheme and plot (which, if you watch Survivor, is when a person’s background is useful to know). Here, it’s fun to know about the dynamics between a team, but the individual background really matters very little.

There is a psychological aspect to doing well each leg. For race examples, I’ll try to focus on the 2 seasons you have watched for examples. Colin and Christie won, a lot. By usually finishing at the top of the pack, they avoided stress which gave them extra oomph at the end. By continually doing well, they clearly got in other teams heads and forced stress on other teams worrying about where they were all the time. Sure, they lost in the end, but their spectre hung over a bunch of teams that got psyched out. Kris and Jon were equally competent and continually worried a bunch of teams. Winning battles can aid in doing well in the war.

Agreed. This is probably the weakest part of the show. Let them keep money but be penalized time, or something. This is a new addition over the last couple of years. And, I hate it.

The bunching is done much more than previous years. Again a negative. I understand the need for it, but I also know that the same can be accomplished with a mid-leg bunching opportunity to create tension there and then let the good separate from the bad. Another drop off from the early seasons are the clues. They used to require detective work 40-50% of the time. Now, it’s about 10%. Some of the best interaction happens while a team tries to figure out what country a particular flag represents so they know where to fly. Again, check the early seasons. A better show then. It’s in a mid-life slump trying to meet the hardcore fans desires while reaching a new crowd.

Luck plays a role, which it always will. Eliminating some of the bunching would fix this.

I’ve seen places on that show I didn’t know existed and now want to visit. I’m not looking for a travelogue. I’m interested in seeing something new. I saw enough to know the terra cotta warrior shrine looks awesome. I would never have considered that before. The natives are half the fun. The bullwhip guy in Hungary? Comedy gold.

Again, watch the early season when the DVDs come out. As a diehard fan, I can speak for most of us when I say that changing the last place penalty of money removal, minimizing the late leg bunching, and giving tougher clues would all be good moves. But on the whole, this is the best reality show on TV because it focuses less on petty, interpersonal dynamics and more on people dealing with the stress of the world around us.

Kate and Allie weren’t lovers? Next thing you are going to tell me is that Laverne and Shirley were straight too…

Seriously though, I see any number of teams that I can root for. Lynn and Alex are obviously cast to become a new “Taem Guido”. They should be fun to watch.

Yeah, I think Lynn and Alex will be fun to watch, but I don’t think they’ll last long. It seems to me they’ve way underestimated some of their opponents, like “the Hillbillies”.

As for Ryan and Chuck, although Ryan hasn’t traveled outside the US, Chuck has. He mentioned traveling in Europe, Columbia, Australia, and New Zealand in their intro video.

I also like the mom and son team, Susan and Patrick. I’m not sure how well they’ll do, but I’m already rooting for them. Their nick names for some of the other teams were pretty funny, and I loved the way they saw themselves as the team everyone else would overlook. I also loved the way they’re gunning for Rob and Amber.

See, I like the interpersonal stuff. I’d love to see Rob get a chance to mess with his fellow competitors like he did to Lex on Survivor. There are only two chances to stick it to your opponents in the entire race, and only two teams get the opportunity.

I’d have loved to have seen Jonathon go to work on the other teams this last time. The other teams just watched him and felt sorry for what’s-her-name, and maybe said a few things behind his back, but his actions had no effect on them. Throw in a little trash talking during the eating challenges or have more interactive challenges where one team can block or impede the opponent and it’d be much more fun.

Does anyone know if they give them fake names? Meredith says he’s a Masters swimmer just like me, he’s also from my area and says he holds a number of records, yet his name doesn’t apear on any of the records I can find. I would say that if he did swim with the Masters he would had to of shown up in at least a couple of events around me, especially the larger ones. I’m going to have to keep my eyes open when the season starts in a couple of months.

De Gustibus and so forth…

I watched the very first episode of Survivor I and have never felt compelled to tune in for more than about 45 seconds ever since.

Well I guess I can answer my own question. This is Meredith, though I find it strange that he’s such a good swimmer that I can not find his name on any of the local meets or the national meets.

I’m with you. When they are eliminated (preferably in a horrible, gory and really long & drawn out accident) there will be rapturous celebrating at Levdrakon’s house.

Is it too early to start referring to them as &?

Mundane, if you think this show sucks why do you even bother to waste your time watching it? Seriously, this is a bigger peeve of mine. I can understand watching a few episodes of a show and realizing you don’t care for it but to go through two whole seasons of a show you don’t like? For what?

Glad I’m not alone. Although I certainly have enough “Romber” hate to share. (I even hate that nickname - in my house, we call them “Mr. Jerk” and “Evilleen.”)